ACCRINGTON Stanley have announced a new signing as Phil Edwards returns to the club on a free transfer.

Edwards' capture means the Reds have strengthened their defensive options for the new League One season.

The 33-year-old, who joins from Bury, has signed a one-year contract with the option of a further year ahead of the 2019-20 League One campaign Stanley will embark on.

Edwards will be a familiar face to the Stanley fans after he made a total of 217 appearances for the Reds between 2006 and 2011.

Following his first spell with the club, the defender has spent time with Stevenage, Rochdale, Burton Albion and Oxford United.

Edwards most recently spent two seasons with Bury, during which time he made 45 appearances for The Shakers.

Stanley manager John Coleman said in Thursday's press conference: "Phil is a Steady Eddie, we know what we are getting with him.

"He can cover numerous positions along the defensive line and, to us, he is a no risk signing."

Edwards is Stanley's eighth signing of the summer transfer window, but the Reds boss is keen to make further additions to his squad.

"I still want to bring in a couple more signings. I need a striker," said Coleman.

"It’s going to come to a point where the loan market is the only place we can look. It’s difficult, we’ve had bids in for players and they’ve been turned down.

"We missed out on Luke Armstrong and we made bids for other League One centre forwards, but we’re not in a position yet to do what Portsmouth did and spend a couple of million on players."